What do Guinea pigs eat
What do Guinea pigs eat

What do Guinea pigs eat? | The Ultimate Guinea Pig Food List 2022

Guinea pigs are herbivores, so their nourishment should be based on ace-quality guinea pig hay, pelleted guinea pig diet and limited amounts of fresh fruits and fresh vegetables. An imbalance in their nourishment can result in obesity, chronic diarrhoea and diseases of the heart, kidneys or liver. Deliberately introducing new foods to your guinea pig’s everyday diet as significant or abrupt dietary changes can result in health issues (such as diarrhoea).

Nourish your guinea pig on a constant schedule, two times a day, morning and evening. Guinea pigs will eat like a horse if given the opportunity, so, to avoid obesity, remove the leftover food from their cage after one hour and discard it. Never put in new food substances, including hay, before cleaning out the old leftover food.

Chlorine-free, fresh, filtered water must be always available inside your guinea pig’s cage particularly during warm weather, as guinea pigs are vulnerable to heatstroke. Their water consumption should be a minimum of five ounces daily. Wash your guinea pig’s water utensil daily with a mild washing liquid and sterile it with hot water.

What do Guinea Pigs Eat? What all can be included in their diet? 

Guinea Pigs eat hay

Hay: 

Guinea Pigs eat hay as their favourite food. Hay is a significant part of your pet’s nourishment. Guinea pigs need this kind of fibre for adequate digestion; thus, it must be available to them at all times. Munching on hay also enables you to wear down your guinea pig’s teeth, which develop continuously. Be sure to buy green, high-quality, clean and fresh hay that is sweet-smelling, dry and free of dirty mould. High-quality range hay such as Timothy hay is a considerable option.

Pellets:

 A commercial guinea pig diet is specially composed to give proportional nourishment with the favourable dosage of Vitamin C and other necessary nutrients. Always go for pelleted food that has been veterinarian-tested and authorized. Also, follow the feeding instruction on the packaging as a manual.

Vegetables:

Guinea Pigs eat vegetables as they enjoy the crunch they get while biting one. Guinea pigs should be given one cup of vegetables each day. New vegetables should be given to your pet one at a time. Fresh, grown organic greens are the promising option. Vegetables that your Guinea Pig can eat include:

  • Romaine lettuce (never iceberg lettuce)
  • Carrots and carrot tops
  • Peas
  • Broccoli spears
  • Spinach
  • Artichokes
  • Kale
  • Tomatoes (not the stems or leaves)
  • Green and red bell peppers
  • Other dark green veggies

These vegetables are enriched with vitamins and minerals that are valuable to your guinea pig’s all-around health. Wash all the veggies thoroughly to eliminate fragments of harmful pesticides and prevent serving cold vegetables.

Fruits:

Generally speaking, try to feed more vegetables than fruits as fruits have high sugar content in them. Small, bite-sized quantities of fruit served every day will amuse your guinea pig and will give much-needed Vitamin C for their healthy growth. Fruits guinea pigs can eat include:

  • Oranges
  • Apples
  • Pears
  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Kiwi
  • Papayas
  • Peaches
  • Cucumbers

Also, remember to wash all fruits thoroughly before giving them to your hungry guinea pig and prevent serving a cold fruit.

Treats & chews:

 It’s suggested that everyday treats (including fruit) should not surpass ten per cent of your guinea pig’s cumulative food intake. Many commercially manufactured treats include artificial sweeteners, Salt or sugar, before purchasing treats for your guinea pig read the labels carefully and try selecting healthy options for your pet.

Since guinea pig’s teeth grow continuously, you should incorporate a diversity of fun chews, incorporating sticks, gummy toys, balls, blocks and treats prepared particularly for small animals. Not only are they a good pastime for your guinea pig to chew on, but they also assist to get rid of boredom. The next treat alternative is a small animal salt lick, which is an affluent source of healthful minerals and is a healthful way to fulfil your guinea pig’s craving for salt.

Cecotropes: 

Nature has given guinea pigs an extraordinary method for enhancing their unique nutritional necessities. Cecotropes are tiny, soft pellets that include nutrients soaked up from plants during the digestive procedure. They move from the big intestine, out the anus and are eaten instantly. While this procedure may look strange or even revolting, you must let Guinea pigs eat it and not prevent it as cecotropes are an essential portion of your guinea pig’s nourishment.

What Foods guinea pigs cannot eat?

There are numerous types of foods that you should prevent providing your guinea pig, for numerous reasons. Some food items can be harmful to your piggy’s health, some substances are too rich in fat or sugar, some might even choke your pet, some have no nutritional value, some can result in gas and some can result in bloat. 

A list of the foods to stop feeding your guinea pig includes:

  • Chocolate (or anything else containing caffeine)
  • Onions
  • Garlic
  • Iceberg lettuce
  • Avocados
  • Nuts
  • Potatoes
  • Seeds
  • Corn kernels
  • Peanut butter
  • Rhubarb
  • Bok choy
  • Dairy products
  • Bread
  • Meat

You should also never give your guinea pig any plants, flowers or grass from your lawn or garden as they may incorporate harmful pesticides or other dangers; many houseplants are also deadly, so often oversee your little pet when they are out of their cage roaming in the lawn.

Risk of scurvy in guinea pigs and the importance of Vitamin C!

Risk of scurvy in guinea pigs and the importance of Vitamin C!
Risk of scurvy in guinea pigs and the importance of Vitamin C!

Guinea pigs have a high risk of cultivating a Vitamin C shortage called scurvy due to their incapacity to synthesize the vitamin.

To fight scurvy, your guinea pig requires 30–50 mg of Vitamin C every day. Pellets and treats enhanced with Vitamin C should be given your guinea pig’s everyday must-have intake, but there are also more options.

While you can give Vitamin C in liquid or tablet form, these alternatives are less naturally used. Supplementing with treats in the aspect of vegetables and citrus fruits permits you to give Vitamin C from raw sources, while still letting him admire the variety and fulfilment that attains from a well-balanced nutritional value diet.

Guinea pig’s favourite food?

It’s not so easy to define your guinea pig’s favourite foods, as it is with humans. Guinea pigs are very diverse creatures and what appeals to one may not necessarily apply to another.

One thing for certain is that, while a large part of pet owners choose pellets because they are convenient, healthy and formulated to provide all necessary nutrients, some guinea pigs seem less interested in them than vegetables or fruits. Whether you decide on pellets or fresh vegetables/fruit for your furry friend, be sure that their diet contains enough hay daily.

One guinea pig owner recently shared with us how her guinea pig loves to eat oranges (the fruit), while another one said that their pet sucks on watermelon cubes for hours! Some other feeds that are mentioned in forums are carrots, apples, sweetcorn, cucumbers and strawberries.

How much protein does a guinea pig need?

The amount of protein suggested every day varies depending on your specific pet’s size, breed and age. However, there are various ways to assess how much protein you should be feeding your guinea pig; the best way is to look at the specific instructions on their food packaging or ask your veterinarian.

One thing for sure is that your pet needs an adequate amount of dietary protein because it’s essential for maintaining muscles, bones and organs.

What foods can guinea pigs eat daily?

What foods can guinea pigs eat daily
What foods can guinea pigs eat daily

Guinea pigs should be given a balanced diet of hay, pellets and fresh vegetables every day. Fresh fruit and Vitamin C-enriched treats can also be provided on top of their daily intake as they are tasty and provide additional nutrients.

People often ask what is the best food for guinea pigs – well, there isn’t one specific type that you need to feed your pet but rather a mix of all different types such as hay, pellets and vegetables/fruit each day.

Anything else sounds like too much, too little or just bad!

By offering your guinea pig unlimited timothy grass hay (the most important part of their diet), an adequate number of pellets (included in the list) and one or two cups of vegetables daily, you can be sure that your little friend is getting the right amount of nutrients.

As long as you are feeding them these three things each day, their diet will not lack any important minerals or vitamins. Make sure to check the food labels for the correct quantity per serving size because some pellets have a higher protein content than others.

What do guinea pigs eat in the wild?

Your furry little pet won’t need to go hunting for slugs and worms to supplement his diet with additional protein if he lives indoors all the time – but it would still be very much appreciated! Guinea pigs are naturally prey animals that live on grasses and plants in the wild, but they require hay or grass at all times because their teeth continuously grow and they need to gnaw on something hard to wear them down.

Also, guinea pigs should be allowed access to safe greenery daily; you can let them out of their cage for a run around the garden or the house (under supervision), and this way they will get plenty of exercises too.

What do guinea pigs hate the most?

There’s only one thing that guinea pigs hate and that is the lack of variety in their diet. Like most animals, they get bored of eating the same food every day and will refuse it if this goes on for too long.

As a result of weight gain or simply because their owner doesn’t bother to look after them properly, obese guinea pigs suffer from medical conditions such as arthritis, heart problems and even organ failure. The best way to avoid this is by ensuring they have a balanced diet of hay, pellets and fresh vegetables daily.

How often should you feed your guinea pig?

Guinea pigs require hay at all times during the day but only need pellets once a day (or about three times a week) and vegetables at least twice.

You should always divide their daily food into three equal portions – hay first, then pellets and finally some veggies – and give them one portion of each at the same time every day. They will eat all three, although they tend to leave the pellets until last because they aren’t as tasty or fun!

How much water do guinea pigs need?

Guinea pigs must have access to clean water at all times throughout the day; this is essential for keeping them hydrated and healthy.

The amount of freshwater your pet needs also varies depending on his overall diet but it’s recommended that you serve him up to 400ml per day. You can use a plastic water bottle and simply attach it to the side of the cage with a hosepipe – like a drinker, but this time it holds water instead of feed.

This is the best way to ensure your guinea pig has constant access to water because most drinkers can be knocked over easily and make such a mess!

Be sure to wash out any plastic bottles every few days with some hot soapy water because these tend to collect slime which isn’t good for their overall health.

Also, don’t give them milk or dairy products; guinea pigs are lactose intolerant creatures that can get very ill if given anything containing milk (even in small quantities).

What guinea pigs eat naturally?

What guinea pigs eat naturally
What guinea pigs eat naturally

They mainly eat fresh grasses, hay and vegetables in the wild but when they aren’t the fussy type the guinea pig will eat almost any vegetable.

These are some of their favourite foods which you can feed your pet on to ensure he gets plenty of vitamins and minerals every day:

Carrots – They love these root vegetables!

Celery – Contains lots of water to keep them hydrated along with healthy nutrients!

Romaine lettuce – The greener, the better for guinea pigs because it contains lots of vitamin C.

Brussels sprouts – Very good for increasing their immune system so they don’t get ill often.

Kale – Has lots of antioxidants which boost their immune system even more so.

Spinach – A great source of iron that gives them energy and helps speed up their metabolism!

Alfalfa hay – This is a very popular type of hay in the US but it’s not available in most countries. Alfalfa contains lots of protein, calcium and other essential nutrients for guinea pigs.

Parsley stalks (and leaves) – Parsley has no nutritional value but can be used as an appetite stimulant if your pet doesn’t feel like eating much. They love rooting around for these stalks inside their cage because it keeps them active too!

Also read – Can Guinea Pigs Eat Green Onions

Final Thoughts

If you ever catch sight of anything out of the normal with your guinea pig, take them to their veterinarian doctor right away. Indications of probable illness comprise crusty eyes, sneezing, weight loss, diarrhoea and hair loss. With adequate care, you can anticipate your guinea pig to survive up to eight years. Like any other pet, your guinea pig has to go for annual check-ups. Talk with your veterinarian to assure that your guinea pig is having a proper intake of nutrition they need.

Leave a Reply